Sunday, May 27, 2007

Bush's Problems With Lawyers

If you click on the link in this entry's title, you can read an article in Newsweek about Monica Goodling and Alberto Gonzales. In that article is a fuller description of the confrontation between Ashcroft, Gonzales and Card over the Justice Department's refusal to sign-off on certain surveillance tactics being used by the Bush Administration.

One thing that a lot of people don't know about George W. is that while he was able to get into the Harvard Business School, it was not his first choice for a graduate school. He also applied to the University of Texas's law school. That school refused to admit him and its Dean suggested that he would not be happy as a lawyer.

Now, here is a question to consider: does W's failure to get into law school help explain the contempt that he has for lawyers and for the law? He has made a lot of political points taking shots at trial lawyers. He has tried to politicize the Justice Department. He has installed a hack yes-man as United States Attorney General. He has disregarded laws he doesn't like and when he signs a law that he disagrees with often issues a "signing statement" indicating that his administration has no intention of following the law.

All of these acts are evidence of the disdain that he has for lawyers and for the law as a profession. Now a lot of business people don't like lawyers. Lawyers are often the people who screw up a deal by insisting on language in contracts that complicates a contract. Corporations see lawyers as people who sue them and insist on exposing the way they do business. So this attitude of W's is not surprising, but he is not any business school graduate. He is a person who runs the Executive branch of the United States government which, by the way, carries out its function by using laws.

Given his background, it is fair to ask whether we are now stuck with Gonzales as AG because the University of Texas's law school wouldn't let him in. Maybe a lot of this stuff could have been avoided if they would just have let W come to school and not insisted that he be qualified.

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